In its policy statement, the Commission noted bluntly that the problem is that ‘European buildings are old’. According to their research, almost half of EU buildings feature boilers installed before 1992, with an efficiency rating below 60% - while 22% of installed gas boilers, 34% of direct electric heaters, 47% of oil boilers and 58% of coal boilers are beyond their recommended service life. While renovation of existing buildings could lower energy consumption, the research found that the current refurbishment rate is below 1%. In addition, it found that the amount of wasted heat from industrial processes could cover the EU’s entire building sector heating needs.
In the new strategy, the Commission aims to address five key areas: making it easier to renovate buildings; integrating electricity systems with heating and cooling systems; increasing the share of renewables used in heating and cooling; recovering wasted energy from industry; and getting consumers and industry involved in the process. Under the ‘easier renovation’ rubric, the strategy aims to promote energy efficiency and strengthen the reliability of energy performance certificates. To address the issue of wasted energy, it proposes district heating networks fuelled by industrial waste and cogeneration plants; cooling through cogeneration and absorption chillers; and analysis of waste heat potential at national and local levels.
In practical terms, the Commission said many of these proposals are ‘non-legislative’, meaning they will be up to Member States to implement. On the legislative side, it noted that the Europe-wide Energy Efficiency Directive, the Energy Performance of Buildings Directive, the Smart Financing for Smart Buildings Initiative, the new Electricity Market Design and the proposal for a Renewable Energy Framework will all be reviewed this year.
Kaukolämmitys sekä sähkön ja lämmön yhteistuotanto ovat merkittävässä roolissa tulevaisuuden Euroopassa. Näin tulkitsee Energiateollisuus ry EU-komission tuoretta lämmitys- ja jäähdytysstrategiaa.